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                                                         MAHARA GALERY UPGRADE

Mahara Gallery Upgrade by DESIGN ENGINEERS

Developer: Kapiti Coast District Council
Architect: Athfield Architects 
Contractor: Crowe Construction
Location: Kāpiti Coast
Service Type: Facade Engineering
 
Toi MAHARA finds its residence within a Council-owned building situated in Mahara Place, Waikanae. This new gallery serves as the permanent home for the esteemed Field Collection in Waikanae. Beyond this primary purpose, the upgraded facility stands as a testament to its commitment to fostering art and culture, providing additional space for exhibitions, storage, workshops, and administration within a museum-standard setting. Notably, the upgraded Mahara Gallery/Toi MAHARA has significantly expanded its capabilities. The refurbishment project has doubled the number of exhibition galleries and nearly tripled the overall exhibition space. This expansion not only allows for the accommodation of the Field Collection but also enhances the gallery's capacity to host a diverse range of exhibitions and cultural events, thereby enriching the community's cultural experience.

The ambitious undertaking to upgrade the Mahara Gallery commenced in November 2021 and reached completion in October 2023. The Council played a pivotal role in the project's realization by investing $2.8 million, contributing to the overall estimated cost of $6.5 million. The Mahara Gallery Trust demonstrated its success in securing additional funds, including government support from the Regional Culture and Heritage Fund (RCHF), alongside generous donations. A notable contribution of $250,000 from the Waikanae Community Board further fueled the project's success.

The redevelopment journey prompted the temporary closure of Mahara Gallery in late 2021, marking the beginning of construction activities in early 2022. The main construction work concluded in early 2023, followed by the commissioning of building systems and the installation of the inaugural exhibitions. This milestone represents not just the physical transformation of a building but a significant investment in the cultural landscape, providing a vibrant and enhanced space for the appreciation and celebration of art within the Waikanae community.

DESIGN ENGINEERS are actively engaged in delivering comprehensive joinery engineering PS1 packages tailored to support the meticulous design of windows and doors. Recognizing the critical role that windows and doors play in the exterior envelope, particularly in terms of weather resistance, our team is committed to ensuring optimal performance and durability.

The MAHARA Gallery upgrade project served as a showcase for our expertise, employing a range of cutting-edge systems, including the ALTUS 136mm Flushglaze system, ALTUS 106mm Flushglaze suite, 48mm Atlantic suite, Pacific thermal suite, and 159mm Flushglaze suite. The aluminum joinery selected for the MAHARA Gallery features a powder-coated aluminum frame, emphasizing both aesthetic appeal and long-term durability.

Our engineering endeavors go beyond mere provision; we actively provide justifications for the aluminum frame, as well as the window and door opening perimeter fixings and brackets. This involves a meticulous review of shop drawings to ensure that the design not only adheres to structural requirements but also surpasses them. In addition to structural considerations, our team is integral to the materials durability review process. We scrutinize specified materials to guarantee they meet B2 durability requirements, thereby contributing to the overall longevity and resilience of the windows and doors.

Furthermore, our involvement extends to ensuring watertightness for window joinery by reviewing the interface between different cladding and joinery. This meticulous attention to detail underscores our commitment to delivering solutions that not only meet industry standards but also exceed client expectations in terms of structural integrity, durability, and weather resistance.

DESIGN ENGINEERS are dedicated to a holistic approach that encompasses the entire design process – from engineering justifications to shop drawing reviews, materials durability assessments, and watertightness considerations. This ensures that our clients receive not only aesthetically pleasing designs but also robust, enduring, and weather-resistant solutions.

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